Weekly News Digest on Digital Marketing & COVID-19 – 05/30/20
Stay Posted on the Most Recent Coronavirus-related Business and Ecommerce News
US businesses are taking measures to protect customers’ health as they welcome them back to stores. Keeping the public informed is imperative to easing current health and economic concerns and making sure everything runs smoothly and safely. As such, Adlucent will provide general ecommerce and digital marketing news as the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve. To remain up-to-date as we publish the latest news, sign up for our email newsletter.
This week, Google began a highly anticipated rollout of $340 million in ad credits for small and medium-sized business owners affected by COVID-19. The one-time amount, which expires in late December, will be up to $1,000 and credited according to past ad expenditure. There is no application, but businesses should have run ads for ten out of the last twelve months and either in January or February of 2020 to qualify.
Instagram TV (IGTV) has announced monetization partnerships with content creators, which will be offered as badges or ads. Specifically, three badge types, displayed in front of usernames and ranging in price from $.99 to $4.99, will be piloted on IGTV Live, and users can purchase them to advance comments in IG Live threads. Currently, the creators can keep 100% of the proceeds while IGTV tests the badge feature. Also, now until the program expands, up to two hundred preselected creators can display ads from major brands on their IGTV content and keep 55% of the ad revenue. The 15-seconds (or shorter) ads will be visible when watched in full version IGTV.
IGTV hopes to compete with YouTube, which has dominated the long-form video field but aims to avoid its controversial content issues. So, along with controlling the monetized content by banning profanity, Instagram has put into place strict rules and a list of prohibited materials.
In competition with Amazon and Google, Instacart introduced a self-service feature whereby advertisers and brands can buy ads to promote products in search results. This new feature is particularly timely on the heels of the coronavirus pandemic, as more consumers are ordering groceries than ever, offering an ample audience for ads. On the platform, brands can manage their bid prices, budgets, and targets on their own. Over the past two months, major brands have tested the tool, which is available in over three-hundred grocery stores and retailers nationwide.
Adlucent detailed our latest webinar (hosted with partner Uberall), guiding retailers transitioning back to physical operations. Check out the summary or watch the full webinar video.
Online shopping and BOPIS (buy online pick up in-store) has increased in record numbers, and this shift in consumer spending is likely to continue for the foreseeable future. Although there will be some permanence in this trend, for the most part, customers will also return to physical retail when they feel safe. In the meantime, measures, such as contactless payments, shopping by appointment, and temperature checks (already used at Apple) may become the new normal. Regardless, consumers need to know what to expect when the doors reopen. Changes like these should be communicated to customers in advance, and businesses should keep information current by utilizing various online tools.
Furthermore, in the near-term, transitioning businesses should keep their online and mobile presence optimized and initiate campaigns and Local Inventory Ads for opening businesses. In ads and elsewhere, any curbside pick-up options should be emphasized. Finally, business listings, hours, store pick-up, and safety information – especially COVID-19 related information – should be kept up-to-date and accurate.
Google My Business has released new features to support small and medium-sized businesses affected by the pandemic. This month, in response to high demand seen from search results, Google added support links. This tool introduces a means for businesses to include donation or gift card options on their Business Profiles. Additionally, Reserve with Google can be used for online services, as well as online classes and virtual appointments. Furthermore, Google My Business will better highlight secondary hours for businesses, as well as attributes in the restaurant category like curbside pick-up and no-contact delivery. Another update will give restaurants more control over delivery services, allowing a preferred deliverer option and a means to avoid or report unauthorized or duplicitous 3rd parties.
The above overview highlights this week’s important digital marketing news, as the situation continues to unfold. Visit the Adlucent website for ongoing information and updates.